Story from Februs 41.
'Didn't Half Hurt'
A Short Story by J. E. Roberts
It was sheer naughtiness that made Liz and me start husband-swapping. You see, the men can't tell us apart because we're identical twins.
We got the idea while shopping, so we went to the nearest loo and swapped clothes over and under the cubicles. It was a real hoot when we emerged as each other. Then we exchanged secrets about our mates and worked out every detail, giggling like Angela Brazil schoolgirls planning a dorm rag.
The whole thing worked like a dream – and something of a dream it was too, each being unfaithful without the men having a clue what was happening. I knew all about Ted's hobbies, about what food he liked best, about what he'd say when he walked in and about his work problems. I recall saying, 'Is Stanford (his boss) still giving you trouble, darling?' and the thrill of getting a response that showed he had no idea what trick we were pulling.
He was different from Tom In his love-making, much rougher at limes, though caring and considerate as well. Afterwards, he said, 'You were very lively tonight!' I was flattered, but I wondered if Tom was saying the same thing to Liz.
We continued this once a month for ages, before something went wrong. As soon as Liz rang and suggested that very evening for husband-swapping, I sensed it was a bad idea. It wasn't the best day for me because Tom and I had tickets for a pop concert, but Liz was unusually pushy, so I agreed. I went to her house, swapped clothes and reluctantly forfeited my ticket.
When Ted came in that night, I knew my hunch had been right. His face was grim. 'You know what you've got coming,' he said. 'Go upstairs and get ready.'
Ready for what? I thought, hut could find nothing to reply.
'Why are you waiting?' he thundered and I scuttled upstairs. It certainly didn't look as though we were about to make love. But what else could I be getting ready for? What could be wrong? Should I have been ready to go out? Liz had said nothing. My heart was beating wildly.
Obviously she'd tricked me somehow. What could it be that she hadn't told me about? What had I got myself into?
I didn't have long to wait, before I heard him turn the door handle. As he strode in, he stopped, astonished.
'Why aren't you ready?' he shouted. 'That's another six smacks on the bottom – the bare bottom, remember!'
My eyes seemed to glaze over. So that was it! I thought of Liz enjoying the pop concert with Tom, while I had to bend over to take her spanking! And I didn't even know what it was I was supposed to have done to deserve it!
It must have been something pretty heinous, because he didn't look at all in the mood to discuss the matter rationally.
I felt sick. 'What do you want me to do?' I stammered.
'We've been through all this before, Elizabeth!' he said, quietly. 'That's yet another six smacks for being unco-operative! Anyone would think you'd never been spanked before!'
I was astonished. All this time, he'd been spanking my sister and I knew nothing about it. Tom would never have laid a finger on me. I still didn't know exactly what to do, but I'd got the general idea, so I turned to face the end of the bed, put both hands under my skirt, put my thumbs in the waistbands of my knickers and tugged them down. Miserably, I bent over the bed and reached back to pull my skirt up.
It looked as though I'd done more or less the right thing, because he seemed mollified. 'That's better!' Ted muttered. 'But not quite right – as you know full well!
Are you just trying to make me more angry? If so, you're succeeding, woman!'
I sighed. 'Another six smacks?' I asked and he nodded.
I was desperate, as I'd no idea what he was expecting me to do and the extra spanks were mounting up. And because I didn't know what it was all about, I couldn't try to argue myself out of it. Then I thought, I'll play up to you.
I gave him my most meaningful look, as though I understood everything, and told him, 'I want you to say it. I want you to use the power of words. I want you to describe exactly what you want me to do, every little detail. That's my right, isn't it? Don't I have a right to a request before execution?'
It worked. 'You can put those knickers back up again for a start, woman!' he said. 'Haven't you learnt yet that I'm the one that takes the panties down round here? Now try to behave for once. Turn and face the dressing table, put your hands on it, arms straight, head up. Arch your back a little, legs straight, stand on tip-toes and stick your backside out. That's right.'
My skirt fell back, partly covering my behind. I caught my breath, as he lifted it up and gently placed his left hand on my back to hold the skirt in position. I turned my head to him. 'Not too hard, darling, please!' I said.
'Getting worried, eh?' he said, with a grin. 'That's because you know you've really got it coming this time! Face the mirror!'
I'd never seen him like this before. He'd always been so courteous, so quiet, so kind. As I looked round at him, he seemed more attractive than ever. Yes, I could certainly understand what Liz saw in him. There was something of the Heathcliff in this softly-spoken architect. I could imagine him out on the moors, calling for me. I'd always suspected that Cathy wanted Heathcliff to thrash her.
And now I wanted Ted to thrash me. I wriggled my behind in encouragement, as my heart beat faster, not hi fear this time, but in mounting excitement. It's funny how things turn out.
What was it about him? Was it his determined tone? Was it his angry frown, making him look all eyebrows? Or was it the masterful way he raised his hand over my almost defenceless rear?
In the mirror, I could see him bringing his hand down with a resounding crack across my right buttock. It was a great shock to me, for I'd no idea it would hurt so much. I leapt up, clasped my behind and shouted, 'Ow-ow-ow-ow-ow!' in little staccato yelps.
'Not so stoical this time, Elizabeth!' he said, grinning triumphantly. 'You'd better get used to it. I've hardly begun and remember you've an extra 18 this time!'
'You've a stingy palm today,' I explained.
'Worse than last night?'
'It certainly hurt me more than it did last night,' I agreed. At last I'd said something that pleased him, for he grunted and smiled.
I realised I was going to have to do a lot better, if I were not to give myself away. At first, I thought, if Liz can take it, so can I. But, as I put myself back in my so-vulnerable position, I had doubts about Liz: could she really take it? Had she called me that morning out of mischievousness? Or was it a panic measure to get out of a punishment she richly deserved?
I didn't have time to think about it any more, as I had to brace myself for a whole series of smacks, first on the right cheek, then on the left, then in the middle, then lower down. What a hard hand he had! I'd never thought of him before as the athletic type. He was a pen-pusher by trade, wasn't he? How was it he seemed to have the muscles of a coalminer? He knew how to wallop a girl's rump all right.
My only respite was half-way through, when he paused to take down my knickers – right down and off, making me raise each foot in turn. Now my last defences had gone; nothing was between his stingy palm and my tender skin. I made little soundless gasps and watched my own agonised expression in the mirror. Then I started yelping, then ouching, then howling, then begging him to stop.
Eventually I had no choice but to sing out loudly. He paid no attention and carried on as though I'd not moved.
I found out later that he and Liz have what they call a safe word and that if I'd only yelled out, 'Maureen O'Hara!', he'd have stopped at once. Well, silly old me, why didn't I think of that? I mean, 'Maureen O'Hara!' is the natural thing to yell when your backside's getting blistered, isn't it? When I asked her why she hadn't told me that beforehand, she said she thought I'd have used it too early. Gee, thanks, Sis.
Too right I would. I was starting to think I couldn't hold back the tears or stay in position, when abruptly he stopped. Relieved it was over, I got up to rub my sore backside, when he said, with what seemed to me a touch of gleefulness, 'Now the extra spanks! I think we'll do this differently, Elizabeth. First I'll want all your clothes off.'
Soon my shoes, skirt, blouse and bra were piled on top of my knickers. The bastard, he might have reacted, as my breasts fell into view. I twirled round to let him enjoy my nakedness, but all he said was, 'The slipper!'
He gave me a clue where the slipper was, by pointing to the door; otherwise I'd have assumed it was in the bedroom, which seemed to me the natural place to keep a slipper. I rushed downstairs to search in cupboards and drawers, desperate that our little ruse would be found out, with goodness knows what consequences. At first I crawled under the windows and hid behind curtains, but I got flustered after a while so I just let the neighbours have an eyeful.
I was taking so long that he yelled, 'What's keeping you?'
'I'm in the loo!' I lied. 'Can't a girl go to the bathroom when she needs to?'
A grunt, in reply. I flushed the loo, to cover my tracks and kept searching in likely and unlikely places.
Eventually, he said, 'Hurry up! That's another six spanks for keeping me waiting!'
I thought as hard as I could. Where would you keep a slipper, if not in the bedroom? I'd looked everywhere. Then I remembered the shed. It was a warm summer evening so I just draped myself in a sheet, dashed out there and pulled open a drawer, rather less carefully than I should have done. The drawer came out. Rulers, canes, tawses, straps and even a birch fell across the floor.
My covering slipped off. Mouth open, I stood naked and looked at the clutter; for once, I'd found a part of my sister's life that I knew nothing about. Then I noticed a diary among the debris. Day after day was filled with entries like, '25 hairbrush bare OTK', '5 mins hand knickers DTK + 6 cane bare bed' or '30 mins corner jeans bedroom + 40 large slipper (jeans 10 knickers 10 bare 20) stairs + 12 tawse bare touching toes.'
The longest entry said, '8 mins hand (1 min skirt 2 mins knickers 5 mins bare) OTK + 15 mins corner hallway hands on head skirt in view door + 24 spoon (12 knickers 12 bare) washing machine + 15 mins corner kitchen arms folded bare in view side window + 10 paddle bare step-ladder + 6 riding-crop naked desk + 20 mins corner library naked no view could rub' and added, in very large letters, 'DIDN'T HALF HURT!' I wondered, what did OTK mean?
Each page included a delicate drawing of herself in a different pose: using a handmirror to look at marks on her bottom; or lying on a bed, with her rear end raised by pillows and a look of indignation in her eyes; or bent over Ted's knee, waiting apprehensively for that first spank.
I noticed immediately how the sensitivity of her drawing offset the subject-matter. For example, one picture showed what I imagine was the two of us, though even I had to guess which was which. One of us stood in the corner, sticking out her behind and staring apprehensively at a cane on the wall. Was she meant to be me, as I'd never been caned?
Next to her, in another corner, was her twin, facing the other way, with one arm shading her eyes and the other hand holding her skirt round her waist. Her knickers were crumpled across her knees and the cane was in its place on the wall, but broken. You may guess what her backside looked like.
And, as for the riding-crop didn't-half-hurt entry, that included two silhouettes of identical nudes, leaping about, clutching their behinds. I suppose I should have been horrified; yet to me, those drawings put spanking in a new light. Her work spoke not of violence or cruelty, but of love, passion, and fulfilment. It reminded me of that unexpected feeling of Wuthering Heights in those moments before Ted started my spanking.
On the fly-leaf she'd written in large, flowing letters, 'Sex means spank and spank means sex' and underneath, there were two of us again, drawn from the rear view, one twin trying to look at her bottom over her left shoulder and the other ditto over her right shoulder. One bottom was marked 'SEX' and the other 'SPANK'.
I realised then why she'd been so insistent that we swapped that day: she didn't like keeping a secret from me. She wanted me to be a part of it all.
I was jolted out of my reverie, as Ted shouted from above, 'Elizabeth! Where's that bloody slipper?' It was his most irate tone of voice so far. More worried than ever, I slammed the book shut and put it back in the drawer.
But what could I do? There was no slipper there – nor in any of the other drawers. Time was running out. At last, I looked up and there it was, hanging on the wall, with a nail through its sole. Relieved, I grabbed it, covered myself and left the rest of the spanking paraphanalia all over the floor. (Liz got spanked for that later – serve her right, I say.)
When I got back to the bedroom, he was standing, arms folded. I gulped. Now I'd found the slipper, I'd got to find the courage to take it. I took as long as I could to fold the sheet neatly on the bed; then I bit my lip and tried to remember how encouraging I'd found my sister's drawings.
'Will you never learn to hurry up?' he said. 'Another six will bring the spanks up to 30 – a nice round number.' He decided to put me over his knees this time, which made me feel very awkward and humiliated, though I suppose I must have deserved it for whatever she'd done.
What was the sole of that slipper made of – concrete? Solid oak? I looked at it afterwards and it was just an ordinary leather sole, but it really hurt, as it thumped down again and again on a backside that was already sore enough, thank you. I kept wishing he'd use his hand instead. I hadn't realised a slipper would be so much more painful than a hand.
I found out later that the hole had been drilled in it to make it hurt more – I don't know why it has that effect, something about the law of physics, apparently. And I had to take 30 whacks with it! I'd had more than enough after the first six.
I gritted my teeth, gripped his left knee and told myself I was getting my just deserts for fooling two men at the same time. That's the funny thing about being spanked, you just have to lie there and take it, so you feel as though you're colluding against your own bottom with the man who's walloping it. That poor old bottom of mine, being punished for all my sins – and my sister's as well!
Those 30 spanks seemed to take forever because they went so slowly. Sometimes he'd make me wait for more than a minute before bringing the next one down, so I was thinking, 'Get on with it, man! Get it over with!'
And often, when I finally did get it, the smack took me by surprise, so that I was yelping and wailing and unable to stop my naked body from leaping about. He held onto me and kept up a running commentary – you know the kind of thing:
'This one is going to be harder than the last, but if it hurts, let it, Elizabeth, because you know you deserve it and you know I'm only doing it because I love you blah blah blah.'
As the thirtieth whack resounded round the bedroom at last, I suddenly realised what OTK meant. This was the first time I'd ever been put OTK – and my bottom had taken such a pounding that I wasn't likely to forget it. I've since heard Ted going on about how a man has a duty of caution when spanking a novice. He wasn't very cautious with me! Seldom can the phrase 'serve you right' have been more apt. Sore and sorry for myself, I stayed OTK for a little longer: there I was, a thoroughly spanked young woman, with no one to blame for it but myself and my twin.
Ted was very cheerful afterwards, as well he might be. I had a funny feeling I knew what was going to happen next, because I was pretty randy myself and I'd had ample opportunity while OTK to work out that he was well ready for me.
Gently he lifted me up and put me on my feet. Then I suddenly wondered if I'd have to stand in the corner instead. While he stared at me in the pause that followed, probably deciding what to do with me next, I resigned myself to 30 mins corner bedroom hands on head bare in view window or whatever he chose.
But then he started treating me like a princess. He leapt off the bed, knelt to kiss my hand and said, 'You took that beautifully, my dear. It was your best ever.' That made me feel quite smug.
He waited on me, made me coffee and vanished downstairs, to cook quite an elaborate supper. As I examined my marks in a hand-mirror, I could hear him singing away in the kitchen. Eventually he swept in, with trays of food, and we ate supper in bed.
Finally, we put the dishes on the floor and turned to each other for a memorable, long-drawn-out love-making. It's funny that, when he'd been walloping me, I'd have given anything to get him to stop, but afterwards, I was so glad he hadn't. I don't know what the pop concert was like, but I can't imagine it was better than that.
* * *
Next morning, before I left, I filled in Liz's diary for that day, '10 mins hand (5 knickers 5 bare) dressing table + 30 slipper with hole in it naked OTK + supper bed.' Then, because Liz and I both went to art college and have similar styles, I drew a picture of what I could see in the mirror while the slipper was at work: my mouth wide apart, my eyes wide open, my fists clenched and my bared bottom like two red hillocks in the distance, hit by an earthquake. Furthest away was an angry Ted, his arm in both an upward and a downward pose. Underneath I wrote, 'DIDN'T HALF HURT' and added four exclamation marks, to make sure Sister Dearest understood what I'd been through.
Now Liz and I regularly change partners. When I start to miss Tom, I return to him; and after awhile, when I deserve another bottom-warming or two, I visit Ted, sometimes for as long as a month. It all seems to work well enough.